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Main > South African folktales > Fairy tale "Why Old Jackal slinks his Tail"

Why Old Jackal slinks his Tail

‘You try it on, Mister Ou’ Jackalse, an’ see what I’s do to you!’ an’ Tinky swells hisse’f into a reg’lar ole rage as he tink o’ dat egg yestiday an’ his little missis frighten’ to deaf nearly.

“Dat make Ou’ Jackalse in sich a wax dat he spurt out de word he didn’t mean to. ‘I on’y wish I could yust come up dis tree to you. I’d scoff you down in yust one gullup an’ your eggses ahter you,’ ses he, a-rampin’ an’ a-tearin’.

“‘You ses dat,’ squeak young Tinky, ‘but I knows better. It’s not you cahnt—it’s you dahnt. But I’ll teach you to frighten poor little mammickies into givin’ you deir eggses, you skellum! skellum! skellum!’

“Ou’ Jackalse he get dat mad, a-snappin’ an’ a-snarlin’ while he listen, dat he fair turn away an’ slant out o’ dat, an’ Young Tinky is yust dat conceited of hisse’f he cahnt har’ly wait till his missis comes home ’fore he begin a-tellin’ her dat’s de way she ought to done yestiday. An’ Missis Tink she listen an’ she tink she’ll do de same herse’f now, if ever Ou’ Jackalse trouble her agen.

“So de nex’ day Young Tinky he go ahter de scoff, an’ his missis she sit on de eggs, tinkin’ it’s all right now. But Ou’ Jackalse he’d bin a-watchin’, an’ he know’s who’s a-gone an who’s a-stop at home, an in about no time he’s at de foot o’ darie t’orn-tree agen, an’ de same ole scratch! scratch! scratch! at it.

“Little Missis Tink she stick her head out an’ she start to tell him to get out o’ dat, in de biggest voice she’s got. But she hadn’t more dan got out de first two words dan she see his teef where he bare ’em all round, white an’ yammerin’, an’ he look dat savage an’ murderin’ dat de rest o’ de words stuck fast in her froat, an’ she fair chattered wid fright.

“‘Down wi’ darie egg, else I’ll come an’ tear you into smitchies,’ ses Ou’ Jackalse.

“Missis Tinky nearly drop out o’ de nest wid de scrik she got; but she tink o’ what Tink Tinky say, an’ she squeak it out. ‘You cahnt come up dis tree if you try,’ ses she.

“‘Cahnt I?’ ses he, all hair an’ spiky.

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